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A Way to Get Rid of Off-Topic Posts

    General discussion

  • As most of you would probably agree, there are a lot of off-topic posts.

    How about adding a new method for reporting them to moderators so they could be moved?

    Just add "Report as Off-Topic" to the Vote Button, and use a system similar to what happens when you mark something as abusive. The moderators will look at it and take appropriate action (probably moving it to the Off-Topic Forum).

    Or if you need more moderators, you can put me down for the list, I wouldn't mind. ;-)

    Take a chance. Prepare to be surprised.
    Monday, August 4, 2008 8:37 PM

All replies

  • This is an interesting problem. It also seems that off-topic posts seem to have increased greatly in the last 2 weeks or so (especially OS related issues). I wonder if there is someplace that is pointing to this forum that shouldn't be? How are people getting to the forums without at all reading the forum titles (it seems)?
    Matt Fraser, STO Forums Software Developer
    Monday, August 4, 2008 11:02 PM
  • I also wanted to say that one of the difficulties with this particular forum (and the Forum Bug forum, among others) is that they are shared among brands. So, unfortunately, threads can show up on almost any topic, and you hae to know if there's a forum for that on ANY brand. And if it's on the brand you're not currently on, you then need to load up the other site to make the move.

    Not that that is insurmountable. These particular forums aer jsut a little trickier to moderate than others... :)

    Matt
    Matt Fraser, STO Forums Software Developer
    Monday, August 4, 2008 11:06 PM
  • mattfras said:

    I also wanted to say that one of the difficulties with this particular forum (and the Forum Bug forum, among others) is that they are shared among brands.


    So how about creating a main page listing all the forums this software is connected to?

    That way, moderators could get the "off-topic" report I suggested, check the long list of forums, and take action.

    Take a chance. Prepare to be surprised.
    Monday, August 4, 2008 11:45 PM
  • >I also wanted to say that one of the difficulties with this particular forum (and the Forum Bug forum, among >others) is that they are shared among brands. So, unfortunately, threads can show up on almost any topic, >and you hae to know if there's a forum for that on ANY brand. And if it's on the brand you're not currently >on, you then need to load up the other site to make the move.

    This answer confuses the heck out of me.

    It surely doesn't matter if there is (say) a Windows XP forum. Any bug report here on Windows XP is off-topic.

    So I don't get this statement of yours -  "threads can show up on almost any topic and you have to know if there's a forum for that on ANY brand".

    Or do you mean that only if there is such a forum is it possible to MOVE the incorrect post to the correct forum. If so, why bother. Just delete them.

    If I get a question in the "SharePoint - General" forum that has nothing to do with SharePoint, I delete it and write as the reason "Not a SharePoint question". If the question is about SharePoint but ought to be in a more specific SharePoint forum, I move it to that better SharePoint forum. (If it's about a related product and that product has a forum, I move it to that forum.)

    Here any question that isn't about the Forum software is way off-topic isn't it?

    There's a difference between way off-topic and just slightly off-topic and that should be reflected in the way those threads are handled.
    Tuesday, August 5, 2008 4:19 AM
  • The reason there is an Off-Topic forum is so the threads can be moved there instead. Are you suggesting that that should be removed and off-topic threads should be deleted?

    If we had a list, moderators could skim the list for the topic, and if it was listed, move it. If not, take it to the off-topic threads.

    Take a chance. Prepare to be surprised.
    Tuesday, August 5, 2008 4:24 PM
  • Mike Walsh MVP said:

    >I also wanted to say that one of the difficulties with this particular forum (and the Forum Bug forum, among >others) is that they are shared among brands. So, unfortunately, threads can show up on almost any topic, >and you hae to know if there's a forum for that on ANY brand. And if it's on the brand you're not currently >on, you then need to load up the other site to make the move.

    This answer confuses the heck out of me.

    It surely doesn't matter if there is (say) a Windows XP forum. Any bug report here on Windows XP is off-topic.

    So I don't get this statement of yours -  "threads can show up on almost any topic and you have to know if there's a forum for that on ANY brand".

    Or do you mean that only if there is such a forum is it possible to MOVE the incorrect post to the correct forum. If so, why bother. Just delete them.

    If I get a question in the "SharePoint - General" forum that has nothing to do with SharePoint, I delete it and write as the reason "Not a SharePoint question". If the question is about SharePoint but ought to be in a more specific SharePoint forum, I move it to that better SharePoint forum. (If it's about a related product and that product has a forum, I move it to that forum.)

    Here any question that isn't about the Forum software is way off-topic isn't it?

    There's a difference between way off-topic and just slightly off-topic and that should be reflected in the way those threads are handled.


    I beleive that off-topic posts should be moved to the appropriate forum if possible. If that forum hasn't been migrated to this system yet, then it shoudl be moved to off-topic. I don't think deleting helps anybody, since the OP will come back and wonder what happened to their question (it won't show up in "My threads" anymore... it's deleted) and just post it again.

    Matt Fraser, STO Forums Software Developer
    Tuesday, August 5, 2008 10:01 PM
  • Yeah, Mike and I have a disagreement on that (I agree 100% with you and he's on the other side)
    Take a chance. Prepare to be surprised.
    Tuesday, August 5, 2008 11:19 PM
  • >since the OP will come back and wonder what happened to their question

    I thought the poster gets a message when his thread is deleted.

    Isn't that the case ?

    Could it be that that was what happened in the old forums and no longer happens here ?

    >and just post it again

    For the record I have never had that happen and I've deleted more than a handful of non-SharePoint / non-related product posts that were posted to SharePoint - General. (Which was another reason for me thinking that posters were informed)
    Wednesday, August 6, 2008 6:02 AM
  • But what does everyone think of my actual suggestion (and revision I mentioned)?
    Take a chance. Prepare to be surprised.
    Wednesday, August 6, 2008 6:13 PM
  • It'd be more difficult than that since the Vote menu is going away...

    See: http://forums.community.microsoft.com/en-US/suggest/thread/cdc31f90-2883-4d11-b520-20e8e3a8be2b
    Matt Fraser, STO Forums Software Developer
    Wednesday, August 6, 2008 8:03 PM
  • Oh... I see.

    (I posted this in that thread but I'll post it again here)

    How about adding "report as off-topic" alongside "report as abusive?"

    ...

    Or, under the Actions tab on top, add a "report as off-topic" button.


    Take a chance. Prepare to be surprised.
    • Edited by Oliver Black Thursday, August 7, 2008 4:30 PM New Suggestion
    Thursday, August 7, 2008 4:29 PM